THE ASTONISHING ADVENTURES OF MISTER GUNN, AGENT 18, in...
The Android Princess Warriors from Neptune



A 15-Chapter Star-Spangled Serial in Space!

by Mike Ferguson
About the author


Previously: Dixie Sterling and Agent 18 are given a spaceship and asked to deal with an alien menace.  The Scorpio One is shot down on Mars where Butch Murdock and Jack Coogan are taken prisoner by aliens in stiletto heels.  Our heroes blast to the rescue and rescue Coogan from a fiery death...

 
 

Chapter Six -The Secret Laboratory of Doctor Warlock!


"THIS WAY," DIXIE SAID TO COOGAN. "I know the way back to the ship."  She started to head back up the corridor.

"Sure you want to lead the way?" said Coogan, trailing close behind Dixie. "After all, those alien weirdos are probably still around somewhere.  You might need me on the front line if you run into any trouble."

Dixie glared at Coogan.  With cold deliberation, she cocked the hammer of her .45 pistol.  "Coogan," said Dixie, "trust me.  If I find trouble, I'll blow its brains out."

"If you say so," Coogan said dubiously.

The two made their way back towards the cavern entrance.  As they got within sight of the metallic doors, though, they saw that their way out was blocked.  Six identically tall and willowy vixens stood between them and the doors.  The stunning women warriors were all buxom, blue-skinned, and clad in form-fitting chain mail bikinis, which certainly looked impressive even if they held no discernable or practical value.  Bright, identical smiles crossed all of their faces.  The women warriors also held massive triple-barreled rifles in their beautiful hands.

"Amazing," whispered Coogan.  "Except for the outfits, they look exactly like the Empress."

"Like who?" asked Dixie.

"Never you mind," Coogan answered.  "Just know that these broads are bad news."

As if on cue, the six females pointed their rifles in unison at Coogan and Dixie.  "Surrender or die," the six said simultaneously.

"Like hell," snarled Coogan.  Without warning, the spaceship pilot leapt towards the female warriors.  They fired at Coogan, sending waves of green flame cascading into the corridor, but somehow Coogan managed to narrowly dodge away from the enemy blasts of energy.  He pounced upon one of the gun-toting women, and with a wolf-like howl he punched one perfect female warrior squarely in the kisser.

However, the only one to scream in pain was Coogan.  A loud metallic clang echoed noisily throughout the stone corridor as Coogan's fist collided with the warrior's face.  Dixie looked on in horror as Coogan crumpled to the floor, writhing in pain.  The warrior that he'd attacked didn't look hurt at all.  In fact, the warrior was still smiling, her face still impossibly perfect and powder blue.  Another warrior picked up Coogan's limp body, and hurled it against the wall like a rag doll.  Coogan didn't get up.  He didn't even move, not a single muscle.

"NO!!!" cried Dixie.  Filled with rage and grief, she leveled her .45 at the six female warriors.  The patriotic sound of American gunfire blasted though the cool underground air.  Four female warriors abruptly lost their smiles and dropped their rifles, as small black smoking holes suddenly appeared right between their perfect eyes.  The remaining two returned fire at Dixie, but their efforts were useless.  Dixie was in a zone, fighting like a woman possessed.  Deftly, Dixie leapt into the air, somersaulting effortlessly over the emerald alien bolts of fire.  She landed squarely in front of the remaining two warriors, and smiled coldly at them.

"Bye-bye," Dixie said sweetly.  She pressed the barrel of her .45 smack against the forehead of one warrior, and as she pulled the trigger, she lashed out hard with a sweeping kick, sending the other warrior sprawling towards the ground.  As that warrior fell, Dixie closed her eyes and blasted away with her gun.  The last warrior hit the ground in several pieces.

Dixie shuddered and opened her eyes.  She expected to see blood, and lots of it.  Instead, she saw only shredded metal.  Where there should have been blood, there was only sparks, silver spaghetti strands of wire and shattered vacuum tubes.

"They're . . . robots?" Dixie wondered aloud.

"Androids, to be exact," said a precise voice.  "Drop your gun."

Reluctantly, Dixie dropped the gun and turned around.  She saw a good two dozen more beautiful female warriors standing just a few yards away.  A blue-skinned man clad in bulky leather armor led the warriors.  A tiny antenna rose out of a steel implant covering the man's ear.

Dixie said nothing.  She just coolly straightened her lemon yellow cocktail dress.

"Get the male human," said the man to the warriors, gesturing impatiently towards Coogan.  He then turned to Dixie.  "Welcome, female human.  I am Doctor Warlock.  You are my prisoner."

***

Mister Gunn laughed as O.G.R.E. swung a wild punch in his direction, missing his rugged face by mere inches.

"That all you got, pal?" asked Mister Gunn.  "Looks like Mama raised a sissy-bot!"

{{DIE,}} responded O.G.R.E.  The giant robot slammed his left glowing fist squarely into Mister Gunn's upper body, sending him flying across the corridor.  Mister Gunn saw stars and little blue birds circle around his head.  Ruefully, Mister Gunn rubbed his jaw, and was surprised to find blood on his fingertips as he looked down at his hand.

"Alright, O.G.R.E.," Mister Gunn said quietly, "now you've done it.  You touched the face.  Anybody who touches Mister Gunn's face better be wearing scarlet nailpolish and a bra."

Mister Gunn charged towards O.G.R.E., leaping and somersaulting as he charged the evil robot, easily evading thundering blasts of gunfire from O.G.R.E.'s right-handed cannon.  As he closed in on his enemy, Mister Gunn flew into the air, bounding over O.G.R.E.'s head.  Mister Gunn landed on the robot's back.  O.G.R.E. tried to reach Mister Gunn with its lethal left hand, but couldn't - it could only grasp at air.

"Not too tough now, are you, sparky?" asked Mister Gunn.  With a grunt, he ripped a thin metal panel off of O.G.R.E.'s armor-plated hide.  He could see the guts of the evil robot, lots of clockwork gears and blinking lights.  Mister Gunn started to pull some of the gears out, causing O.G.R.E. to buck and squeal.  Mister Gunn continued to pull out lights and gears, and even more lights and gears, until he finally got sick of the whole process and emptied a few bullets inside O.G.R.E.'s hulking body. The robot's frame finally stiffened and toppled over, nothing more than a two-ton inactive paperweight.

{{HELP,}} said O.G.R.E.  {{HELP MEEEE749763y974yt7}} . . . and then it shut down.

Mister Gunn hopped off the inactive robot's body.  He straightened his tie, and lit up a fresh Lucky Strike.  "Fixed your wagon, didn't I?" he said with a smirk.  He stuffed his pistol back in its holster.  "Love to stay and gloat, O.G.R.E., but I can't.  Got to find Murdock and the mini whozits-gizmo thing."

Mister Gunn continued to head down deep into the black heart of the Martian mountain, not noticing that O.G.R.E.'s inactive left hand had started to twitch and move once more . . .

***

Dixie tried to struggle free of her bonds, but her efforts proved fruitless.  Her hands and ankles were cruelly bound to a cold steel operating table with leather restraints.  The only thing that Dixie could move was her head.  By turning her head from side to side, she could catch a glimpse of Coogan, also bound to an alien operating table.  The rest of her surroundings were unfamiliar - electrical bolts arced wildly between strange pieces of mechanical equipment, and enormous computers hummed along furiously.  She was a prisoner in some kind of sinister laboratory, that she knew for sure . . . but why?

The somber visage of Doctor Warlock suddenly loomed over Dixie's face. "Ah," said Doctor Warlock.  "Good.  You're still conscious.  I need some information from you."

"I won't tell you anything," Dixie snapped.

Doctor Warlock sighed.  "That's what they all say," he said wearily. "Blast.  How is the Empress Cleopatronica supposed to successfully invade the Earth with her android armies if you wretched humans won't cooperate?"

"Androids?" Dixie asked.  "Those girls . . . they're all robots?"

"Correct," said Doctor Warlock.  "Our planet Neptune was a dying world, down to but a handful of our kind.  I created the Android Princess Warriors in the likeness of our Empress, an army to decimate the galaxy and re-establish the might of the Neptune Empire once more!  The cities of Saturn fell before us, as did the kingdoms of Jupiter.  We landed here on Mars to prepare for our invasion of Earth . . . and to collect the neutronium mini-reactor from your precious proto-analyzer."

"I'd forgotten about the proto-analyzer," said Dixie.  "Why do you need it so badly?"

"The analyzer breaks down items into component atoms for study," said Doctor Warlock.  "The mini-reactor is critical to that process.  When converted into a weapon, the reactor can be used to break down items into nothing . . . as a galactic disintegration ray gun!!!"  Doctor Warlock cackled wildly.

"Thank you," said Dixie politely.  "You've been most forthcoming with your information."

"Oh dear."  Doctor Warlock scratched his head in bewilderment.  "I have, haven't I?  Damn this new medication . . ." He glared menacingly at Dixie. "Do you still refuse to talk?"

"Yes," Dixie said defiantly. "I do."

"Very well."  Doctor Warlock pressed a large button on the wall next to the operating tables.  A steel robot arm started to descended down from the ceiling towards Dixie's face.  Out of the corner of her eye, Dixie could see an identical arm descending towards the unconscious Coogan.  Both arms dripped with sharp needles and other unpleasant utensils.  "You leave me no choice, then.  My robotic torture surgeons will have to rip your brains out of your skulls and physically extract the information I want, synapse by synapse."

"You never actually said what information you wanted," Dixie pointed out.

"Never mind that," said Doctor Warlock.  "The time for talk is over.  I, unfortunately, cannot remain in this room to watch my robotic torture surgeons finish their tasks, as I have other evil plans to hatch.  Also, I have a bladder infection."  Doctor Warlock boldly strode towards the exit. "Goodbye, my dear," he said as he left the sinister laboratory. "Parting is such sweet sorrow . . . especially with your brain!!!"

The evil steel arm drew closer and closer to Dixie's head.  She closed her eyes in terror as blades and needles crept towards her face, mere inches from ripping apart the fair flesh of her lovely face . . .
 


Previous episode: The Left Hand of Doom!
Next episode: The Red Badge of Treachery!


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The Android Princess Warriors from Neptune is copyright Mike Ferguson.